Stones to continue 3G campaign after Conference vote

Maidstone United will continue their campaign for artificial pitches after clubs in the Football Conference voted against permitting them in the competition.

Representatives from the 68 clubs met for an extraordinary general meeting in Telford today and the vote went against the state-of-the-art surfaces. It comes 24 hours after club co-owner Oliver Ash and first team manager Jay Saunders met with the Football Conference Board of Directors to make the case for 3G.

Oliver Ash said: “Our discussion with the Conference Board was open and constructive. Despite today’s vote we will continue a dialogue with the league and press for the acceptance of these surfaces which I am confident will come sooner rather than later. We know there are many clubs in the Conference who favour allowing 3G.

“However, we had modest expectations about the vote because it gave 24 Premier clubs one vote each, while North and South got just eight between them. Additionally, the compelling facts and figures on 3G were not disclosed to the clubs by the Conference Board prior to the vote.

“It’s business as usual for our club. We will continue to campaign for 3G to be allowed higher up the pyramid, while the first team will push for promotion from the Ryman Premier Division. If we were in a promotion position come the end of the season we are very confident we would be allowed to go up on 3G.”

3G4US, the group of football clubs who are supportive of synthetic pitches, are hosting a workshop on 3G Football Turf for football club directors and managers at Step 4 (Calor, Evo-Stik and Ryman) clubs and above. The event takes place at the Gallagher Stadium on Wednesday 26 February. To register, visit www.3g4us.org.

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